The times of year when most people buy things online are coming up again. Because of the Covid-19 pandemic and the sudden lockdowns around the world, 2020 was a very good year for eCommerce retailers. In other words, a lot more people went to their website, placed orders, and bought things. Statista says that in June 2020, there were a record 22 billion monthly visits to eCommerce sites around the world.
There was some economic uncertainty around the world because of the pandemic, but it looks like sales trends in the eCommerce industry didn’t change much from what they do every year. Digital Commerce 360 estimates that 21.3% of all retail sales in the US for the year were made online. This is almost 5% more than the 15.8% in 2019, and it is the biggest jump from one year to the next ever seen in the US. Some buyers were also looking forward to discounts and special holiday prices during the peak season for eCommerce, which played a big role in these numbers.
In this way, the busiest time of year for online stores and eCommerce sites is their biggest problem. And whether you run a drop-shipping business or an eCommerce store, it’s important to pay special attention to these dates. Here are some tips and ideas that may help eCommerce stores do well during the coming busy times.
Make sure your marketing campaigns are good.
First of all, a quality campaign with clear goals is the most important part of any strategy for an eCommerce business. What better way to make your services stand out during the busiest times for eCommerce than to have a unique, eye-catching online campaign that many customers would choose over those of your competitors?
It is very important to look at the numbers from last year to see what did well. This will help you figure out what you need to change for the event in 2023. You can even look at data from previous years to figure out what makes sales happen. By gathering the data, you can find out which promotions worked best and which channels led to the most conversions. Also, it can tell you if more of your customers bought things on their phones or computers. If you own a dropshipping store, you can also use this strategy to talk to your dropshipping supplier about when and how they will run their marketing campaigns.
Lastly, making targeted campaigns is hard, but when it’s done right, it produces high-ranking results and makes a lot of money.
Campaigns should be timed well.
Criteo did research and found that about 6 out of 10 shoppers in the US and 1 out of 2 shoppers in Europe won’t wait until Black Friday to buy gifts if their favorite stores offer discounts early. You can actually use this to your advantage if you have an online store. Extend your campaigns so that they cover the time before some holidays. This will give your customers more time to decide whether or not to buy something. Even better, you can bring in new customers. This plan can help your business grow and get you more customers. You can set up early-bird deals for Easter, discounts before Halloween, or lower shipping costs for orders made during the middle of the season. Again, if you have a dropshipping store, you can match your campaigns with those of your supplier. This will help you make the most of eCommerce’s busiest times.
Add seasonal promotions that people can interact with
Quizzes or surveys can be used instead of old-fashioned banners to keep your audience’s attention. This is a simple and creative way to do so. People don’t pay much attention to or even scroll past simple ads because they want to interact with them. One of the benefits of this type of campaign is that it can bring in new customers because it can keep the attention of a larger audience. You can use a video as an animation, a collage of images, or an interactive ad. All of these are good ways to get people to look at your online store and stay there longer.
Magna, Tremor Video DSP, and IPG Media lab did research that showed that interactive video ads keep people’s attention 47% longer than non-interactive ones. The study also finds that 15-second interactive ads triple the amount of time people spend with a brand. So, if you want to stand out from the crowd during the busiest times of year for online shopping, make sure you have some kind of interactive ad to increase engagements, traffic, and sales. Only then will you be able to see how well your plan worked.
You might want to use social media platforms to optimize your campaigns for the upcoming busy times for eCommerce and boost your sales even more. Social media is the easiest way to stay in touch with people and share thoughts and ideas. These platforms bring together millions of people, and every year that number grows.
Recent statistics show that Facebook has 2.74 million users, making it the most popular social media site. YouTube, WhatsApp, and Instagram come after it. Even if you only use one of these platforms, your campaign can reach a large number of people and lead to a lot of new conversions. You can also use paid ads and “post boosts” to reach a larger audience.
But you’ll need to keep an eye on your organic reach, and to do that, you’ll need to have reviews of your services or products posted on your account pages. Using brand-related hashtags can also make your platform more visible and bring in new customers. Also, both Facebook and Instagram have features that let you load your list of products or connect the eCommerce platform on your website and set up a shop there. When customers scroll through Facebook or Instagram, they will see your products and a tag that, when tapped, will take them to your business website where they can make a purchase.
During busy times, offer customer service
According to a report on eCommerce statistics from last year by SaleCycle, the busiest days for online shopping are Monday and Thursday, and the best time to buy something is between 8 pm and 9 pm. The weekend is for relaxing, and this is true even in the eCommerce industry. From this, you can learn that it would probably be a good idea to have a customer service representative on hand during these busy times for online shopping. Most of the time, the customer service shift ends when the work day does. Because of this, most businesses set up automatic responses for any messages or questions they get after these times. But eCommerce’s busiest times—holidays, mid-season sales, and other hard-to-pass-up deals—make website traffic pretty busy. So, being able to help people right away during these busy times would make money and make customers happy. And what brand doesn’t want both of them at once?
Seeing how stable and well a website works
A general rule of thumb for the performance of a traditional store or a dropshipping store is that if it takes longer than 3 seconds to load, your potential customers will probably leave. In the end, this will cause your business to lose money. Retail Systems Research found that mobile sites take an average of 9.5 seconds to load, while desktop sites take an average of 16.6 seconds to load. This is scary for retailers because many studies have shown that a delay of just one second can cause them to lose up to 7% of their conversion rates. The good news is that this is easy to avoid, especially before eCommerce’s busiest times like Black Friday and Cyber Monday, when traffic to websites goes through the roof. What you can do is check how your website works when there is a lot of traffic and fix any problems you find.
Make sure products are available.
If you have a dropshipping store, this part is even more important. Consumers often feel frustrated when they can’t buy what they want during a shopping spree because the item they want is sold out.
Before the busiest times of the year for eCommerce, you should check the number of items you plan to sell and see if that number matches what you thought you would need to buy. In dropshipping, you don’t even have to keep the products you sell in stock. The person in charge of this is your dropshipping supplier. So, get in touch with its representatives and see what they have in stock. So, your customer won’t pay for an item that your supplier doesn’t have in stock.
Structure your site for SEO.
If your online store is fairly new and you haven’t done the right SEO yet, you have no chance of showing up in Google SERP. Keep in mind that a well-structured SEO is the only thing standing between you and the first page of Google’s search results. This could cause a sharp drop in leads, orders, and sales over time. In 2017, SEMRush did a study that showed that 38% of the traffic to retailers comes from organic search. All of this means that SEO will increase your organic search traffic and help your business move up in SERP.
Offer a simple way to buy things and a site that works well on mobile devices.
If you want to know how to make the buying process go smoothly, the answer is very simple. Use different features on your website to make it easier for people to buy things and to give them a good overall experience. Don’t make your customers confused with crazy designs and banners in places they shouldn’t be. Also, you should always have a mobile version of your site that has the same features for people who browse on their phones. More than half of all online purchases are made from a mobile device, according to reports. Statistics also show that 54% of visitors on Cyber Monday 2019 came from mobile devices. Also, 33% of them bought things on their phones. These numbers seem to go up every year, which is a good reason to make sure your online store is as good as it can be.
Provide a convenient return policy
Lastly, you need a well-thought-out return policy that won’t cause potential buyers any trouble. Not at all during the busiest times for online shopping. No matter if you have a dropshipping store or a regular eCommerce store, you must follow the rules and regulations for the return policy.
Especially if most of your customers are in the EU, your return policy should follow the 14-day rule. This part can be hard if you work with dropshipping suppliers that have different policies for returns. So, make sure to talk to your supplier about this problem and find a way to set up an easy return policy. Lastly, this is a high percentage, but a lot of the things people buy during eCommerce’s busiest times, like Christmas, are gifts, so it makes sense that the return rates would be at least a little higher than during other times. Customers who shop online want the same ease of use that they get in stores, so why not give them the same experience?
Even though 2023 is a year of hope for many people, the busy times for online stores will still bring new problems. No matter how big or small they are, these problems must be solved the right way. Consumers will still want to buy gifts for themselves or their loved ones on Mother’s Day, World eCommerce Day, Halloween, Thanksgiving, Christmas, or BFCM. You need to get them to buy your products and persuade them that the hardest thing they’ll have to do is cross things off their shopping lists.